Who We Are

We are from the Department of Geology at The College of Wooster in Northeast Ohio and we are interested in sampling historical structures for their tree-ring records. Our goal is to assemble long tree-ring chronologies from oaks by sampling both living trees and old wood.

The tree-rings extracted from old wood can be calendar-dated and thus we can determine the calendar date the tree was cut. The tree-ring series are also records of past drought. The data will be used by us and others in modeling past droughts in Ohio and together with similar records across North America.

Tree Ring Lab Staff

Greg WilesDr. Greg Wiles: Director (1998 - present)
(330) 263-2298

B.A. Beloit College
M.S. SUNY-Binghamton
Ph.D. University at Buffalo

Research Interests: Greg primarily researches glacial geology and paleoclimatology working in Alaska during the summer months as well as Quaternary (last 1.6 MY) geology of Ohio. Dr. Wiles is an associate professor of geology at the College of Wooster.

He began studying climate change using tree-rings and glaciers as a doctoral fellowship at the University of Buffalo. After earning his Ph.D. he won a post-doctoral fellowship at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University. Greg has worked with tree-ring and glacier research all over the world traveling to Antartica, Madagascar, and Northwest Territories of Canada. For more on the research of Greg Wiles click here.

Sophie LehmannSophie Lehmann: Lab Assistant (June 2005 - present)
(330) 263-4451

Major: Geology

Sophie is a junior working primarily on historical structures and living trees in North East Ohio
and extending the tree-ring record with old-growth oak samples.




Nathan MalcombNathan Malcomb: Lab Assistant (January 2006 - present)
(330) 263-4451

Major: Geology

Nathan is a senior who can be seen running or riding his bike throughout Wooster's local parks and forests in search of that perfect old growth oak to core. Nathan worked with Greg, Eva Lyon, and Dan Lawson of CRREL in Glacier Bay, Alaska collecting log samples and cores from recently uncovered glacier killed trees.




Eva LyonEva Lyon: Lab Assistant (May 2006 - present)
(330) 263-4451

Major: Geology

Eva is a senior working on Mountain Hemlocks from Glacier Bay, Alaska for her Independent Study. She recently visited the area with Nathan Malcomb, Greg Wiles and veteran to the region, CRREL scientist Dan Lawson. There they collected numerous samples of both living and long dead trees. It is hoped that these samples will be used to extend the tree ring chronology of the Pacific Northwest region and to identify climate patterns of the past based on ring widths.

When she is not in the tree-ring lab Eva enjoys playing softball for the college, watching movies and winter sports. She recently undertook a whirlwind road trip with a few Wooster friends to the essential American landmarks of Badlands National Park, Mt. Rushmore, Devil's Tower, Wind Cave and Yellowstone National Park.

Lab Veterans

Anton HeitgerAnton Heitger: Graduate 2006 (December 2004 - June 2006)

B.A. College of Wooster
Major: Geology

Senior Independent Study: Reconstructing the Little Ice Age Advance History of the Land Lobe Glacier, Columbia Bay, Southcentral Alaska pdf

Anton began his Tree-Ring career analyzing tree-rings from a fallen barn in Orrville, Ohio, where he successfully dated the structure to 1835. This fueled his fire to date more historical structures. He aided Greg Wiles with sampling barns, cabins, and houses, in which he developed and modified current devices to evolve the Historical Structure Dating department of WTRL.

He is also interested in the dynamics of glaciers in coastal Alaska, and wrote his Junior I.S. on the glacial history of Glacier Bay, Alaska. To combine his two interests, Anton worked with Greg and Anne Krawiec in Columbia Bay, Alaska to date the advance of the Land Lobe Glacier using tree-rings. For more on Anton's Independent Study click here.

Anne KrawiecAnne Krawiec: Graduate 2006 (May 2005 - May 2006)

B.A. College of Wooster
Major: Geology

Senior Independent Study: A 267 Year Long Reconstruction of Spring Lake Erie Levels Based
on North Pacific Tree Ring Series.

Anne is from Alabama. She completed her research in Alaska with Anton and Greg at Columbia Glacier.





Peter JohnsonPeter Johnson: Graduate 2006 (July 2005 - May 2006)

B.A. College of Wooster
Major: Geology

Senior Independent Study: Reconstructing Little Ice Age Glacial Histories for Crescent and Amherst Glaciers, College Fiord, Alaska.

Peter is orginally from Tennessee, he is going to Australia in August to live for 6 months. He hopes to come back to the states to find a job with an environmental private consulting or possibly go to grad school. If that doesn't work out, he would love to go to Chile and core some trees...oh and maybe go to Europe to find his future wife.


Elyse ZavarElyse Zavar: Lab assistant (May - June 2005)

Major: Geology

Elyse worked in the WTRL on Russian conifers for the College of Wooster's Environmental Action and Analysis (EAA). She has worked on other projects with Dr. Wiles, such as bog cores from Brown's Lake Bog in Shreve, Ohio and Debris flows and millpond sediments in Wooster Memorial Park here in Wooster, Ohio. Elyse is currently working with Dr. Mark Wilson a Wooster geology professor who specializes in Invertebrate Paleontology and Sedimentology/Stratigraphy, they are researching in Poland for Elyse's Senior I.S.




Will DriscollWill Driscoll: Graduate 2005 (June 2004 - May 2005)

B.A. College of Wooster
Major: Geology

Senior Independent Study: A New Dendroclimatic Tree Ring Network from Lake Clark National Park and Preserve, Alaska

Will worked with Greg and Nick Young in Lake Clark National Park and Preserve in Alaska. Will is also an avid ultimate frisbee player, he recently returned from China where he taught elementary students Science and English.




Nicholas YoungNicolas Young: Graduate 2005 (June 2004 - May 2005)

B.A. College of Wooster
Major: Geology

Senior Independent Study: Using Tree-Ring and Glacial Records from Southern Alaska to Investigate
a Possible Temperature Structure to the First Millenium AD

Nick worked with Matt Beckwith-Laube at Arcadis in Cleveland, but recently left to pursue other interests, currently Nick is a graduate student in Buffalo, New York.




Andy HorstAndy Horst: Lab Assistant (June 2004 - May 2005)

Major: Geology

Andy joined the lab to assist in dating the plethora of cores that Will, Nick and Greg brought back from Lake Clark National Park in Alaska.

He is currently working on Paleomagnitism in Arizona and Iceland with Dr. Robert Varga an associate professor of Geology at Wooster.





Matthew Beckwith LaubeMatthew Beckwith Laube (May 2004)

B.A. College of Wooster
Major: Geology

Senior Independent Study: Tree Ring Dated 1000-Year Advance of Columbia Glacier,
Prince William Sound, Alaska

Matt worked with Greg in Columbia Bay, Alaska collecting tree-ring sample to date the advance of Columbia Glacier. He is currently working for Arcadis, a geological consulting firm, in the Cleveland, Ohio office.